When I decided to share real stories of Breast Cancer in an attempt to raise awareness, I contacted several friends and family members asking for help. I wanted to share their story in their own words. Each story is unique as each has been affected by Breast Cancer in a different way. Today, Deana shares her story…one of fear and what if’s…one far too many experience every day…some with happy endings…some with not-so-happy endings. My friendship with Deana is one cultivated through a love of blogging, scrapbooking and all things girly. Deana is a fitness and fashion rock star as well as a loving mother and wife. You can find her online at (diva)logues.
Hi, I’m Deana Boston. I know Lisa through the world of scrapbooking, but have followed her through her journey with fighting breast cancer too. I think she’s one of the coolest, strongest, most inspiring women around and I’m honored that she’s asked me to help her this month with breast cancer awareness!
My story happened 3 years ago. The Breast Health Center called me to schedule a follow-up appointment to recheck my left breast after my annual mammogram I’d had a week earlier. I was really worried after receiving the call, especially since they wanted to schedule my appointment right away. In my mind I was thinking that if they call you after a mammogram, it can’t be good news. So my husband took the day off work to take me to my appointment and provide some support. I was admitted right away after checking in, and told to change into a pink robe. I sat down in a different waiting room than the one my husband was in, along with about 15 other women wearing pink robes. It was a very somber waiting room and I found myself staring at the 2 rose canvases hanging on the wall across the room from me the entire time I was there.
After a long wait, I was called in for my mammogram. It consisted of 4 different images on my left breast and then I was sent back to the waiting room. More women came and went while I kept sitting there. Once again, they called my name and asked me to come back in the room for 3 more images of my left breast. And once again, I was sent back to the waiting room. By this point, I was beyond nervous. In fact, I was visibly shaking so badly, that a nurse walked by me and asked, “Are you cold, honey?” I simply replied, “No. I’m fine” but wanted to say…. “Please just tell me what’s wrong… I can deal with that. I cannot deal with this waiting and not knowing though.”
Finally, my name was called and they asked me to come back in. Each time they would call me back in, I would think it was to get my results & answers, but once again they took 5 more images of my left breast and sent me back to the waiting room where I was now alone. All the other women had come and gone and I had been in and out of this waiting room for about 2 hours… and 12 images of the same breast if you’re keeping count. I was just sure, by this point, they were going to give me bad news. And frankly I thought if I didn’t have cancer going in, all this x-ray radiation might get me there instead!
Then they called me back to a different room for an ultrasound. The wait for the radiologist to come in seemed like forever so I stared at the ceiling and told myself over & over again that I was going to be ok and that my young daughter wasn’t going to lose her mom. Finally she entered the room, performed the ultrasound, found a pea-sized cyst that was of no concern to her and said to me, “Ok… see you next year,” in a very matter-of-fact way.
It was strange how she said it and not the ending I was anticipating after over 2 hours of stress, waiting and the unknown. But after a few questions and her reassurance that all really was ok, I was beyond relieved. And I’m just sure, that there were a few women in the waiting room that day that didn’t hear those same words. I could tell by some of the expressions on faces as they left the waiting room. One thing is for sure, I will continue to get my annual mammograms. And even though this particular day was long and stressful, I’m glad they were so thorough.
Many blessings and prayers to all those who have been affected by this terrible disease. And many thanks again to my amazing friend, Lisa, for sharing your story with all of us and for using your own experience to give back and do something positive with it. You ROCK!